Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Role of Parents in Athletics

Been away a while, unfortunately. Last week and a half was taxing in terms of student teaching and doing the extra work involved with it. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel however, only two and a half weeks left, then it's onto Como Park and BASKETBALL SEASON! I've REALLY LOVED the teaching a great deal, and will miss it, but I would be filling you all full of crap if I said I wasn't completely ready for the season to be here!

There was a post on Minnesota Preps by Michael Much (who oversees the board) about what the parents role in athletics should be. No one touched it, so it think I will stay away from posting on there about it. But I will write a few comments on here in terms of what I PERSONALLY feel the role should be.

First and foremost, I think that parents should be there to positively support their child and their child's role on the team, regardless of what that role is. If the player's role is a starter or their role is the 12 guy on the bench, each player is uniquely important to the team. Just because one kid plays more than another doesn't mean he is any more important or worth more to the team. Parents should encourage their kids to do the best in the role they are currently given. I really believe this is the biggest thing that parents should do and will ultimately make the sport more enjoyable for themselves and their children.

Secondly, I believe that parents should communicate with the coach about circumstances outside of the sport that may be affecting their child. Did the family just undergo divorce, death, or other tragedy? Is the child struggling in school or socially? Does the player have a disability? Does the parent suspect drug or alcohol problems? Is the child new to the school/area? These types of things are a big help if they are known up front. I don't know about you other coaches, but I'm not a mind reader. I'll have a hunch something is amiss, but can never say for sure. Being a high school coach, you usually find these things out pretty quickly, but the sooner the better!

Thirdly, I believe that parents should try to help the team/program when it is needed. Volunteer to help at fundraisers, to help carpool when needed, etc. A little bit of time/effort can go a long way and help out a lot in regards to running the program. Also, the more that help out, the less burden falls on a few select people.

Be an advocate/cheerleader/positive supporter of the program and all the kids in it. Cheer for every kid on the team, and cheer in a positive fashion. Dress up, attend the games, and show your pride for you child and their teammates. When talking about the program in public, portray it in a positive light as best you can.

Well, there you have it. Pretty short and simple. There is obviously more to it, but I think these are some of the main points. Anyone else have anything to add? Any thoughts? If you do, feel free to post it on here or shoot me an e-mail!

1 comment:

Jeannette98 said...

hi - read your article and thought it was right on the mark - I love that you are so excited about your sport and that you know your still learning. My husband has a website for soccer: and it has the same philosophy..keep up the very positive attitude - it's contagious.